Win a Copy of 'The Meaning of Rice' by Michael Booth

Meaning of Rice - 12th Oct

Win a copy of The Meaning of Rice, Michael Booth’s entertaining new book about a family foodie trip through Japan.

Join food and travel writer Michael Booth and his family as they embark on an epic journey the length and breadth of Japan to explore its dazzling food culture. Booth’s previous family trip to Japan ten years ago resulted in his award-winning, international bestseller Sushi and BeyondSushi and Beyond © NHK, NEP  

The success of Sushi and Beyond in Japan has had improbable consequences for Booth and his family - they now star in their own popular cartoon series produced by national broadcaster NHK! On their return to Japan, however, the real-life Booth family found a country much altered since their previous visit. 

Over the last decade, Japan’s restaurants have won a record number of Michelin stars and its traditional Washoku cuisine has been awarded UNESCO World Heritage status. Top chefs from around the world flock to the country to learn more about the extraordinary dedication of its food artisans, while its fast foods such as ramen, sushi and yakitori have conquered the world - including the London foodie scene. However, as well as the plaudits, Japan is also facing enormous challenges, including the task of safeguarding the future of its culinary heritage.

Often venturing far off the beaten track, the Booths discover intriguing future food trends and meet a fascinating cast of food heroes, from a Fukushima farmer who has dedicated his life to growing the finest rice in the world to a ramen chef who has sacrificed a limb in pursuit of the ultimate bowl of noodles. Along the way, Booth has many other Japanese foodie adventures: he is invited to judge the world sushi championship, ‘enjoys’ the most popular Japanese dish you have never heard of aboard a naval destroyer, and unearths the unlikely story of the Englishwoman who helped save Japan’s seaweed industry.
Comprehensive and deeply researched yet often hilarious, The Meaning of Rice And Other Tales from the Belly of Japan is a whirlwind tour through Japan’s food culture, from Okinawa in the south to Hokkaido in the north. Booth shines a light on intriguing pockets of Japanese food heritage, with chapters on aspects of food culture from regions all over Japan, from sweet potatoes and awamori in Okinawa, pork and shochu in Kyushu, rotten fish in Osaka, yuzu in Shikoku, ramen, tea and sushi in Tokyo, koji and rice in Tohoku, to whisky and melons in Hokkaido.
Those aspiring to replicate Michael and his family's foodie journey through Japan (or just read about it from the comfort of their own armchair) can pick up a copy of the book for £14.99 from most major book retailers, including Amazon, Foyles, Waterstones and WH Smith; see Penguin’s website for more information on where to get a copy:

Alternatively, we have several copies of The Meaning of Rice to give away to lucky SeeJapan readers. All you have to do to enter is email with your name and address and the name of your favourite rice dish, whether Japanese or otherwise! We will randomly select the winner on the 11th December, and post the book during the same week. Good luck!

Booth, Michael

About the Author

Michael Booth is the author of five works of non-fiction: Sushi and Beyond, a bestseller in Japanese and winner of the Guild of Food Writers award in 2010; Eat, Pray, Eat, nominated for a British Travel Press Award in 2012; Just as Well I’m Leaving, nominated for the Irish Times first writers award; Sacré Cordon Bleu, a BBC Radio 4 Book of the Week; and most recently The Almost Nearly People, his bestselling book on the Nordic countries. He lives in Denmark.

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